Tuesday, June 27, 2017

Funrise Has You Covered For Summer Fun

Summer time for children is all about fun. How long can they stay outside, how dirty can they get and how much fun can they have?  This year, Funrise has you covered from tiny to giant.  Bubble play is probably one of the most universal ways for children to have fun. A wand and some solution and the little ones are entertained.

I always loved watching young ones try and blow bubbles - sticking the wand directly on their lips and wondering why the magic bubbles aren't appearing.  Until they learn the skill and realize that the wand can't actually touch them, how about some battery operated bubble fun?

Giant Gazillion Bubbles Giant Power Wand produces some pretty large bubbles for the kids to chase around and try to pop.  The wand takes 2 AA batteries to operate, and comes with a tray to hold the bubble solution.  Dip the wand in the liquid, lift up and press a button. That's all that is needed.
Bubbles from the Giant Bubble Wand

Another option is the Giant Bubble Mill. This one takes 3 AA batteries. You pour the solution in the bottom, press a button and the mill starts to turn, releasing bubbles as it rotates through the solution. Of course, you can also purchase the Giant Gazillion Bubbles solution and use a wand as well.
The Giant Bubble Mill at work producing it's Giant bubbles

Once they are finished with bubble play, they can move onto Tonka Tinys! The Car Crush Escape Playset and the Blast & Dash Quarry playset are sure to be a hit with your truck loving littles. These toys are quite small, so are meant for ages 3 and up.  You can also mix and match other Tonka Tiny toys with the sets.

Giant Gazillion Bubbles products and Tonka Tinys can be found at both Walmart and Toys R' Us.

Monday, June 26, 2017

June 26th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

Happy Monday everyone! My kids only have 3 days of school left - as of 345pm Wednesday, our summer vacation starts! I am so looking forward to having them home for the summer. Can't wait for the fun and new experiences to start.

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Friday, June 23, 2017

17 Dr. Seuss Themed Recipes

Oh, the places you'll go! What would childhood be without Dr. Seuss.  The rhymes are a great way to help kids with reading basics, and the stories are pretty much nonsense which engages kids and makes them laugh and laugh.  We have a few of his stories, and the kids have always loved them.

Dr. Seuss is also a popular birthday party theme for little ones, and this round up features 17 recipes themed around some of his popular tales. Alternately, they would be fun to make and serve as a snack while you sit cuddled up with the kids to read - which is one of my favourite activities.

Which Dr. Seuss story is your favourite? I love Oh, the places you'll go.

17 Dr. Seuss Recipes and Crafts

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Danone Helps Support Active, Healthy Lifestyles and Brings The Danone Nations Cup #DNC2017

Disclosure: I have partnered with YMC and Danone and have received compensation for this post. All opinions in the post are my own.

Mr. J at the end of his first soccer program
My kids love being active - bike riding, swimming, walking to school, they just really enjoy being on the move. Team sports and organized activities are a big part of children’s lives. Both of my kids have played soccer, and this year Mr. K is playing baseball.  Mr. J started playing organized soccer when he was 5 years old. He has always really enjoyed being outside kicking the ball around, whether it is with friends, his brother, his dad (who played soccer well into his late teens, and has now joined an adult league) – or even by himself.

I will often find him in the back alone practicing dribbling the ball and shooting on the net. He tries different kicks, and footwork for when he needs to get past someone.

Team sports are a great way to learn some life skills. When you are on a team with many other kids, there are different personalities in the mix. It gives you a chance to learn how to work together and also how to adapt. Coaches all have different styles, and you may mesh better with one style than another – but no matter what, you still have to be able to work with them.

In addition to those life skills and specific skills needed to play the game, soccer gets kids outdoors and active. Danone is all about healthy lifestyles and active families. As Canada’s leading yogurt manufacturer, their mission is to bring health through food to Canadians and to promote overall healthy, active lifestyles. They have been a supporter of Breakfast Clubs of Canada since 1996, and have also been the driving force behind the Danone Nations Cup (the world’s largest soccer tournament for kids age 10-12) since 1999.

The Danone Nations Cup isn't just another tournament though. This international competition sees over 32 countries participating every year. This event helps kids realize a dream they may have of representing their country against some of the best young players around the world. Canadian selection camps were held in Ottawa, Toronto, Montreal and Quebec City during April, May and June. The national final will take place July 6th, 2017 in Boucherville, QC.

For 2017, a special edition is happening and the selection process has been expanded; Danone is proud to be bringing separate boys and girls teams to the international final. 12 boys and 12 girls will be chosen to represent Canada at the international final in New York. Since its inception, over 65,000 Canadian youth have tried out for Team Canada, and hundreds of them have gone on to represent their country at the international final.

Ottawa’s own Kristina Kiss (who just happened to be a grade behind me in high school), former Team Canada player, Olympian and Pan Am medalist, will be head coach for one of the girls’ teams. The boys’ teams will be coached by Dean Howie and Patrick Leduc.

It would be so neat to represent Canada at an event like this. I wonder if my kids (or anyone they play soccer with) will ever have the chance.  To follow along or stay up to date on the Danone Nations Cup, be sure to follow their Twitter and Facebook accounts.

If you think your child would be able to participate, be on the lookout next year when the tryout dates/locations are announced.

For now, lets all get ready to cheer on the Canadian teams attending this years international finals in New York - Go Canada!

Monday, June 19, 2017

June 19th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

Happy Monday everyone!

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Friday, June 16, 2017

Teacher Gift Idea: Sangria Kit

Every year at this time, there are countless posts on facebook groups asking what to buy for their kids teachers. There are many, many ideas that float around. While most of the "stuff" is cute, if you have the idea, likely other parents in your child's class have the same one. How many mugs, planters, etc does a teacher need?

I have always stayed away from "stuff" for that reason. One year I ordered an edible arrangement for his two kindergarten teachers. I have done cake pops, homemade cookies and most often, gift cards (and some years only $5 each, as that's what we could afford). I ALWAYS include a handwritten note to the teacher.

Last year I got the idea from an acquaintance to do food for the staff instead of individual teacher gifts. It seemed to go over well, and I did it again at Christmas. I was going to do it next week, but then I had the idea to give them ingredients for Sangria. I bought oranges, lemons and limes, and was going to pick up a bottle of wine. Then I was going to print out a recipe and put it in a pitcher.

After buying the oranges, lemons and limes, I popped into the wine store located within the grocery store  - and they had these cute totes filled with wine and cider - AND a recipe. So, instead of stopping to buy pitchers (which they may not need cluttering up their kitchen), I bought 4 of the kits.

I added in the citrus fruits I had purchased, wrote a note to each of the teachers and attached it to the handle. I stopped in to the school on my way home and left them in the staff room for the teachers to find at lunch.

If you are crafty, you could make your own tote, or purchase something cute on amazon.

I do feel that it's more than just my kids teachers that make a difference. Many of the teachers that run the different clubs and sports, and directing the Christmas play, are not my children's teachers. I will drop off a cake or some cookies next week for the whole staff to enjoy.

DIY Sangria kit; end of year teachers gift idea

Thursday, June 15, 2017

Easy Coconut Chocolate Squares

Easy and delicious Coconut Chocolate Squares

I am sure by now you all know how much I love chocolate. Anything with chocolate, and I am willing to give it a try. I am always on the lookout for new recipes, and when they are created with healthy ingredients, all the better.

I love that there is no added sugar in this recipe for Chocolate Coconut Bars. I feel good about letting my kids have a treat like this!
Give them a try - let me know what you think!


· 1 3/4 cup shredded coconut, large flakes

· 1/2 cup coconut oil (measured solid)

· 1/4 cup pure honey

· 1 teaspoon vanilla

· 2 tablespoons coconut oil (measured solid)

· 1/2 bar of chocolate of choice (about 12 small squares)


In the microwave or on the stove, melt the half cup of coconut oil. In a medium bowl, combine the shredded coconut, melted oil, honey and vanilla.

Mix well until all the coconut is covered and looks "sticky"

Line an 8x4 pan with parchment paper and using a spatula, press the coconut mixture into the pan. Press down firmly. The more you press the better the bars will hold together.

Place in the freezer to set.

While the bars are setting (give them at least 20-30min) make the chocolate topping. In a small pot melt the remaining coconut oil and chocolate bar over very low heat. High heat will cause the chocolate to burn.

Whisk frequently until everything is melted and combined.

Pour the chocolate mixture over the coconut bars making sure the chocolate is evenly distributed.

Place the in the freezer for 30 more minutes until chocolate is hard.

When ready to enjoy, remove from freezer cut into bars. Let sit for 5-10 minutes and serve.

Makes 8 squares.

Easy and delicious coconut chocolate squares

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Cool Chocolate Covered Oreo Round Up

I love Oreo cookies, and I love chocolate. When I found out that chocolate covered Oreo's was actually a thing, I was ecstatic.  I did some at home (just melted chocolate with the cookies dipped in them) and then I ordered some molds that would put a design on them. I bought molds with a heart - they can be used anytime, but were perfect for my kids on Valentine's Day!

They are SO simple to make, and you can do some really fun things with them. I decided to hunt for other ideas. 

8 Cool Chocolate Covered Oreo's

  1. Dorky's Deals - Fathers Day Chocolate Covered Oreos
  2. Dorky's Deals - Emoji Valentines Chocolate Covered Oreos
  3. Frugal Finds During Naptime - Golf Balls
  4. Jenn's Blah Blah Blog - Halloween Oreo Cookie Pops
  5. Moms Who Save - Elmo Cookies
  6. Jenn's Blah Blah Blog - Minion Oreos
  7. The Monday Box - Chocolate Covered Leap-rechauns and Pots of Gold
  8. The Monday Box - Penguins and Polar Bears

Monday, June 12, 2017

June 12th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

Happy Monday everyone! This weekend was a hot one, and we had a lot of fun. A last minute decision Sunday morning had the kids running a lemonade stand for a couple of hours in our driveway! They had fun and made a little bit of money for themselves!

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Friday, June 9, 2017

Instant Pot Blogger Giveaway

This post contains affiliate links

The Instant Pot seems to be all the rage right now - I am sad to say that I purchased one in December, and it is still sitting in it's box, yet to be used. I really need to pull it out and experiment with it - since I have heard such amazing things about it.

I have teamed up with 9 other bloggers to bring you this awesome giveaway. The giveaway is open to residents in both Canada (excluding Quebec) and the USA who are 18+. This contest is sponsored solely by the 10 Bloggers who have come together to purchase the prize for the winner. You will have 3 weeks to enter the contest and show love to ALL the Bloggers who have made this giveaway possible by following them via the giveaway entries.

Prize: One (1) winner will be randomly selected from all eligible entrants to win an Instant Pot prize pack. The package includes (1) Instant Pot Duo 7-in-1 Multi-Use Programmable Pressure Cooker, 8 Quart, (1) 2 Count Pot Silicone Sealing Ring for 8 Quart, (1) Instant Pot IP-Silicone Loaf Pan Electric pressure Cooker Springform Loaf Pan with Tempered Glass Base, and (1) Instant Pot IP-Springform Cake Pan Electric Pressure Cooker Springform Cake Pan with Tempered Glass Base. Total value of prize package is $280 CAD. Rules: The first entry (blog comment) is MANDATORY and must be completed by each entrant. Once you have completed the mandatory entry you will be offered additional entry options to earn additional entries into the draw. These additional entries while not mandatory they are very much appreciated and show the Bloggers you appreciate us putting this giveaway together. Please note, ALL entries are verified, if your name is drawn and it is found that you did not complete the entry or unfollowed the account you said you followed, your entry will be null and void and a new winner drawn.

Good luck to all that enter

Thursday, June 8, 2017

Great Teachers Help Set The Path For Students #CatholicTeachers

This post is part of the YummyMummyClub.ca and Ontario's Catholic Teachers #CatholicTeachers sponsored program. I received compensation as a thank you for my participation. This post reflects my personal opinion about the information provided by the sponsors.

When your children are starting school for the first time, it's a big step for both parents and children. As a mother, you worry that your little one is going to be away from you all day, and how someone else could possibly care for them like you can. Having wonderful educators helps to set them up for a positive learning experience, and makes it a little easier for us to let go.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

2017 Summer Bucket List

Each summer, the kids and I make a bucket list of things that we want to do. Some of them are simple, and others require more thought/planning.  Things to do at home, places to go around town and even day trips.  This summer will be a little different, since Mr. J is going to be away at camp for one week, it's going to be strange having only one child in the house; I know we are still going to have a blast.

I look forward to summer break with the kids every year. I love the fact that I am home. Being able to do last minute day trips, and fun things with them throughout the summer is really important to me. Don't get me wrong, I don't plan every minute of their vacation, there is lots of time for them to be at home doing things in the yard, taking off to friends houses etc.  The list just gives us ideas of things we can do and places we can go.

Tales of Mommyhood 2017 Summer Bucket List
  • strawberry picking
  • lots of swimming (we will be getting a swim membership again this year)
  • trips to Saunders Farm (we have annual passes)
  • mini golfing
  • go karting
  • biking locally through the area we live
  • biking through one of the local forest trails
  • park omega
  • day trip to Primitive Designs (Mr. K loves transformers)
    • stop at The Big Apple on our way home
  • Carp Custom Creamery for ice cream
  • lunch at The Cheshire Cat
  • picnic at the park 
  • water fight
  • diefenbunker
  • baking cookies
  • sleepover at grandparents
  • driving range
  • camping (I have this on here, but we don't camp. We MIGHT camp in my moms backyard this summer....we shall see)
I will be posting updates weekly with what we have done, and adding in anything else that we decided to do as well.

Do you have any plans for summer?

Monday, June 5, 2017

#SummerLovinCash Giveaway - $425USD via Paypal

Summer is almost upon us - are you as excited as I am? The countdown to summer break is on, and the last day of school is in 23 days! I am so excited to see what this summer has in store for our family.  Mr. J is going to sleepaway camp for the very first time, and I plan on us doing lots of swimming and other fun activities.

Summer can also mean an increase in expenses (pool membership, summer camps etc) so how great would it be to win $425USD right before summer starts?

I have teamed up with a great group of bloggers to bring you this #SummerLovinCash giveaway. Thanks to Jessica at 4 The Love of Mommy for putting this together.  I would love to see one of my readers take home this prize.

So tell me, what would YOU do with an extra $425USD if you won?

To enter the giveaway, complete the entries in the form below. This is open World Wide and ends 6/19/17 at 1159pm EST

Good luck!

June 5th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

I hope you had a wonderful weekend. I am really looking forward to the summer weather starting soon - the temperatures and rain we have been having felt more like April than June.

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Friday, June 2, 2017

9 Delicious Dessert Recipes Perfect For July 1st

July 1st is fast approaching and that means lots of celebrating for Canada's birthday - and with this being the 150th, celebrations will be even bigger.

Every year we host a barbecue for friends. The kids play, the adults chat and we all enjoy some great appetizers and food.  I try and serve a red and white dessert, so I went on a hunt to find some to choose from for this years party.
Canada Day themed dessert ideas

Kit Kat Canada Day Cake from Little Miss Kate
Jello Swirl Ice Cream from Mom Vs. The Boys
Red Velvet Trifle from Frugal Mom, eh!
Red Velvet Cake Pops from Ottawa Mommy Club
Strawberry Trifle from Wholesome Yum
Strawberry Lemon Creme Crepe Cake from Taste and See
Cranberry Orange Creamsicle Cookies from Taste and See
Strawberries and Cream Ice Box Cake from Happy Deal Happy Day

What are your Canada Day plans?

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

5 Family Oriented Day Trips Near Ottawa

If you are planning on visiting Ottawa this summer, or live here and are wanting to plan a few day trips, then this post is for you. There are many options for day trips in the Ottawa area, these are five that I think are fun. All of these are within 90 minutes or so of downtown.

1. Upper Canada Village - fun for all ages. I went many times growing up, and have been twice with the boys. Plan to spend 3-5 hours at the village to see everything and immerse yourself in what life was like in the 19th century. Pack a picnic and enjoy their picnic area, or purchase food from the cafeteria, cafe or restaurant.

2. Parc Omega - we haven't had the chance to visit, but everyone raves about it. (You can read what Becky from A Little Bit Of Momsense thought and if you want to read in french, you can check out Entre 2 Escales for their thoughts) Stock up on carrots (costco is a good place to go) and feed some of the animals as you drive along.

3. Saunders Farm - outdoor family fun! Splash pad, jumping pillows, mazes, tractor ride and play structure.  Pack a picnic (or purchase food onsite - cash only) and spend the day. Remember to reapply sunscreen or you may come home with a burn. We always have a blast when we visit.

4. Mill of Kintail - I haven't been here since I was in elementary school, it's a popular place for field trips. Hike the trails or visit the museum and see works of art from Canadian artists. Just a short drive West from Ottawa.

5. Go hiking - Gatineau park is a great place to put on your hiking shoes and get out in nature. A short drive from Ottawa. In addition to hiking, you can bike, camp or check out the Mackenzie King Estate.

Monday, May 29, 2017

May 28th Monday Madness Giveaway Linky

How are we already in the last week of May? Time has flown by - school ends in a month. Hard to believe. I hope that you enjoyed your weekend!

If you are a blogger, feel free to list any open giveaways you have on your blog. Make sure to list the prize, end date and country eligibility (CAN/US/WW) any listed without this information will be deleted.

kids board gamespirates leaguewrite letter to disney charactergiveaway

Thursday, May 25, 2017


Mr. J's soccer season started this week. As we were gearing up for the start, we purchased new cleats and shin guards. We talked about what this season might be like, and he was happy to learn there were 4 or 5 boys on his team that he had played with previously.

This year we received an email letting us know when and where their first practice was, as well as a snack schedule.  In past years, we have always just signed up for when we wanted to bring snack - which meant we could choose a week that worked for us. I always try and sign up at the beginning so that we can get it over with quickly.  It doesn't take much effort to pick up some fruit and get it sliced up, but I don't really think that snack is necessary.

At the practice, a few of us parents were talking and all agreed we would be happy NOT doing snack this year. At the end of practice, one of the moms mentioned it to the coach, and he agreed. He said it wasn't necessary, and if we were all in agreement then we could just provide water for our own children - to make sure they stay hydrated.

After so many years, it just took one parent mentioning it to STOP the snack.

What are your thoughts on snacks with kids sports?